WATER MANAGEMENT PLANS IN PANAMA: FROM IWRM TO WATER SECURITY
Free (open access)
333 - 344
VALEIRY ADJANY VEGA CERVERA
Water management in Panama presents numerous existent issues related to increasing water demand, cities suffering from water stress and droughts annually, limited access of water and sanitation on areas, holding back economic and social growth of the population, water leakages in the potable water distribution systems, water pollution and degraded natural systems. The circular economy strategy proposes researchers to reconsider current models, which in aspects of water the challenge lies in managing this resource well, as it is a key component in human activities, industrial processes and agriculture. In the case of Panama, water is also critical resource for the operation of the Panama Canal, as well as energy generation, the two major water users in the country. The Ministry of Environment published in 2010 the National Integrated Water Resources Management Plan 2010–2030 with the objective of guiding actions towards the best use, protection and conservation of the natural resource. However, through the passing of an extensive drought event on 2015 that caused alarm at national level due to shortages of water and energy, a new plan was devised to address the issues thus the “National Water Security Plan 2015–2050: Water for all” was born. This paper will use a comparative method to analyze the changes that the country is going through in terms of water management plans and concepts: from Integral Water Resources Management (IWRM) Plan to Water Security Plan. The study will identify the gaps in the old plan and how they are planned to be filled by the new document, factors that led to its replacement and what potential links of circular economy strategies could be researched in the future to strengthen the National Plan.
water security, IWRM, water management plan